An Open Letter To my Little Brother

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Family, Free Writing, Politics, Resistance

Note to reader:  my little brother lives in the South.  He’s on the right, I am on the left.  We have very little common ground to stand on together these days.  I doubt he will read this on this blog, but this is an email I wrote him but never sent. I love my brother dearly, but he’s broken my heart with his lack of compassion for those who most need it.

Bro,

I know that we go back and forth on politics, that we are divided. It really sucks for me because I want to be united with you in thought, but I know that we are not. I fail to express my thoughts adequately and I end up frustrated with you, with me, with the whole situation of our current political climate.

I perceive what is happening in America as an existential threat. I view it as deadly serious. I am watching the overreach of the president, the willful disdain for media, for people of color, for the poor, and for anybody who dares to criticize the president.

Another Holocaust is in the making. I am not intentionally being dramatic, I am choosing this language purposely, because I really and truly believe things are going to get much, much worse in the future.

My basic starting point is a care and compassion for all people. My heart is particularly moved for those on the margins, the downtrodden. Given the history of the US and our oppression of people of color, I am concerned for brown and black-skinned people and why they would be treated differently than others.

I recognize the structural inequalities in society, I understand in principle the culture of poverty, and therefore I understand why so many people of color need the help of government subsidies. I, personally, don’t mind paying taxes, my hard-earned money, to help others. I don’t consider them as lazy or entitled.

No man is made on their own and if I have money to give, I ought to help others. This feels moral to me, to help the widow, the orphan, the stranger, the immigrant, the homeless. In today’s language, I feel a kinship with DACA children, Muslim refugees, and the poor of society.

Due to economic means, big business, big money, has the ability to influence structures of society through constant lobbying efforts. Every day, for example, Apple and Exxon have lobbyist on Capitol Hill taking congress people to lunch and asking them to legislate in their favor. The congress people, by and large, pass legislation that does not help the people they are elected to serve, but rather those with financial means.

The common person continues to lose ground, because we cannot compete, the playing field is not equal. The gap between rich and poor grows grotesquely larger each day. Real people with real lives are struggling to survive.

Our courts are being filed with unqualified judges who hold alt-right bias. Fox news has become the propaganda arm of the US alt-right. Christians are supporting immoral candidates because of their politics.

We are near nuclear war with North Korea. We are tempting war with Iran. We are inciting war in Israel by cutting aid to Palestine without warning. We are arming Ukraine for war with Russia.

It’s coming to light that the NRA may have been used as a funding source for the Russians to give money to Trump and many Republicans, this is how the money got piped in- Russia to NRA to Trump.

As Mueller gets closer to Trump, the attacks on the intelligence community pick up. Public leaders are lambasted on Twitter. People are insulted daily.

There is no diplomacy. There is no statesmanship. There is no public decorum or common human decency. Trust in government erodes by the day.

Puerto Rico, a US territory, is dying and we sit idle by. We call countries with people of color “shitholes.” We pull out of the Paris Climate Accord, NAFTA, and maybe the UN and NATO. We are increasingly isolating ourselves in a global, connected world.

Tax laws are rushed through that favor the rich, and our children and grandchildren will pick up the 1.4 Trillion dollar debt. We have a ~600 Billion dollar annual military budget with troops deployed in 177 countries around the world projecting/protecting American business interests.

Elected officials who should be standing up for truth, respect, human dignity, have instead taken the moral low road and are embracing a very, very indecent man with poor leadership ability. Every one of the Republicans, excepting Jeff Flake, have acquiesced their integrity…for politics.

I have read before that the only thing necessary for evil to flourish is for good men and women to say nothing, to be silent.  This was the case in Nazi Germany. The Nazi Holocaust happened only 70 years ago and ~12 million people who were labeled as different or other were killed. Hitler’s Nazi regime came to power much like Trump’s coming of power. In the case of Nazi Germany, there was a fire at a government building and that allowed the government to institute emergency measures and pull in freedom from the people. From that point forward, people were loaded into cattle cars and taken to concentration camps to be gassed.

When we read of the ICE round ups happening around the country, this should cause concern.

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

-Niemöller

The United States is in grave danger of collapsing. Societies have collapsed since the beginning of time and yes it can happen here, it is happening here.

Here’s my concern with you. When you follow Trump on Twitter and smile and laugh at his nonsense, you are complicit. When you support Republican congressmen who show no moral courage and enable the poor behavior of the president, you are complicit. When you claim Jesus Christ as your savior, but yet you deny immigrants the opportunity of a life free from violence in their mother countries, you are complicit.

When you are willing to use DACA children as bargaining chips, you are complicit.

When you tease me and play coy with me when I am presenting the seriousness of what’s happening, you are complicit.

Bro, I will not die or be killed (if things get that bad) without having said my peace. I care about humanity, people, especially people of color and the poor. I believe that a man ought to know when enough money is enough and give back to those most in need. Politicking against the people and in favor of large business interests is complicity.

Donald Trump is an aberration and he’s doing great harm to our country. The Republican Congressmen who have lost their spines in supporting him, are aberrations.

To the mainly white men all over the world with greed for money above and over caring for people, you are complicit.

I stand in solidarity with good men and women who want the best for their families, who want to live in peace, and who desire genuine freedom and democracy. I stand in solidarity with those who expect elected, public leadership to be humane, dignified, and decent. I stand in solidarity with those who desire leadership that advances the interests of all people, including people of color.

Enough is enough, Bro. Please stand up for righteousness and be counted, be courageous and walk the path of a noble man.

You know I love you little brother, and I always will.  Push comes to shove, I got your back.  I love you, Bro.

Bro

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resilience + resistance + socialism

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